About 1st Choice Credit Union
1st Choice Credit Union is an NCUA insured and CDFI credit union, headquartered inside of Atlanta’s historic, Grady Memorial Hospital.
1st Choice Credit Union
The credit union is a community-focused organization, owned and operated by its 9,000 members. It was founded in 1946 to serve employees of Grady Hospital under the name Hospital Authority Credit Union. The organization’s name was changed to 1st Choice Credit Union in 1991. 1st Choice Credit Union offers a full range of financial products and services for individuals and businesses, with over 200 Credit Union network locations for Shared Banking Services. www.1stchoicecu.org
1st Choice was approved as a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s CDFI Fund in January, 2022. The CDFI certification allows qualified financial institutions to access grants and other federal funds to provide financial products and services in low-income communities for local residents and businesses.
With a 76‐year history of serving the Atlanta community, 1st Choice Credit Union is a National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) federally insured state‐chartered financial services institution with over $36M in assets and 7,878‐member owner‐operators according to the NCUA.
Founded in 1946 to serve employees of Grady Memorial Hospital, it was originally named Hospital Authority Credit Union and became 1st Choice Credit Union in 1991.
Headquartered on Atlanta’s historic Auburn Avenue, we are a minority depository Institution that prides itself on being a community‐focused organization. Certified by the Community Development Financial Institution Fund (CDFI Fund) as a NCUA‐CDFI, 1st Choice is one of only 416 credit unions in the country to receive the prestigious certification indicative of the role the credit union plays in the economic advancement of Atlanta’s communities of color. Now moving forward toward fulfilling an historic 80‐year legacy of committed service, 1st Choice desires to set a new strategic direction for stability and sustainability that ensures operational excellence and solidifies its community commitment for years to come.
1st Choice Vision “Our Vision is to become, within five years, the preferred financial institution for our members and deliver a diversified and member‐centric product offering through modern, digitally enabled channels while retaining our socioeconomic and co‐operative orientation.”
1st Choice Mission “Our Mission is to be a strong, safe, and secure financial institution achieving its vision by being a good financial resource for the communities we serve, and in the lives of our members.” 1st Choice Values: Trust. Integrity. Service.
For over 70 years, 1st Choice has celebrated the diversity of our workforce and that of our member base. We have created a culture where everyone is treated with integrity, respect and empathy. This extends beyond our walls and into our communities. We remain deeply engaged in making the communities that we serve better.
We recognize that we would not be the organization that we are today without the dedication and commitment of a wonderful and = diverse group of people who further our mission to improve lives every day. We stand against racism, we stand for inclusion and we stand in solidarity with our teammates and our communities.
– Dina Hairston, Interim CEO
Credit Unions are a cooperative with one primary mission: To serve their member/owners.
Not for profit.
For-profit corporations who offer a full range of financial products and services.
Earnings are returned to members through services like free ATMs, better rates and lower fees.
Earnings go to outside bond and stockholders in the form of dividends.
Insured by NCUA up to $250,000.
Credit unions are democratically governed and elections are based on a one-member, one-vote philosophy.
Banks are governed by paid shareholders. Voting rights depend on the number of shares owned.
More than 30,000 surcharge-free ATMs.Banks require customers to use their branded ATMs and branches for services or pay fees. Some services are unavailable outside the bank. Credit unions are local, community based financial institutions. Members support their local communities when they bank at a credit union. Banks are big! The average size of a bank is double that of a credit union. Credit unions have members, not shareholders. Banks have customers and shareholders. They must make money from their customers to please shareholders.
Board of Directors
Partner at Parker Poe
Vice President at Grady Health System
Sheilah Montgomery, CUDE
President/CEO at Proactive Impact, LLC
Paresh J. Patel